Unbelievably friendly and warm staff who gladly gave expert travel advice and recommendations that only a Roman would normally be privy to. - Loic Diels
I LOVE this website and will gladly recommend it to anyone headed this way. Nothing disappointed us! - Mary-Iris Taylor
I have been using Cross-Pollinate for about 10 years now. The service is consistently great and I can always find just the kind of apartment we like, at the right price. - Hirani Himona
A really great idea - with a network of hand picked little rooms/guesthouses. If only we could have this in more city destinations! - Zoe Buck
I love Cross-Pollinate and every time we go to a new city I look to see whether they have some accommodations over there. - Arantza Aldea
The two places I have stayed at from Cross-Pollinate have been among the best across Europe. Highly recommended. - Nicholas Burn
Thanks a lot to Cross-Pollinate for the opportunity to experience a city as an insider! We really enjoyed our stay in Rome and Venice and look forward to more. - Tatiana Marchenko
Cross-Pollinate was very helpful when the owner of the B&B wanted to charge us for the baby under 2 y o. It would have been difficult without them since the owners did not speak any english. - Yulia Pichugina
This was our only stay with a C-P apartment and we were very pleased with the entire process. Will look to use them again on our next Europe trip! - Anthony Giglio
Great web site and quick response from the team a CP made the whole experience easy and hassle free. I have already recommended CP to quite of few of my airline industry colleagues and I'm sure they will make use of their excellent service. - Shane Pickles
Cross-Pollinate was extremely helpful! They found us a place to stay in our price range when many other places of business couldn't help us. - Sarah Seminutin
Cross-Pollinate was very easy to use, and it is so much better to stay in places like these than big corporate hotels; you get a much better feel for the place. - Kaspar Deane
Very straight forward. Well done. Definitely would use it again. Love these type of alternatives to hotels! - John White
Cross-Pollinate was fantastic and easy to use. We used Cross-Pollinate to book a room in Florence (the second leg of our trip), which was everything I thought it would be. We have recommended Cross-Pollinate to our friends. - Barbara Carlin
Cross-Pollinate are great - the descriptions are accurate and they are very responsive to questions. - Dominique Bayne
Cross Pollinate was just the best. I had tried a couple of places before coming upon them. As soon as I sent the first email I stopped looking for any more websites. I just wish they expanded to every city in Europe. Their knowledge, helpfulness, etc. was second to none. - Caroline Collis
CLOSED - Elsa's Colosseum Bed & Breakfast
This would be one of my favorite places to stay in Rome, and I would definitely send my mom here! I can't imagine anyone NOT loving a stay at Elsa's.

Situated in a neighborhood right next to the Colosseum, surrounded by impressive and important historical sights (such as Santo Stefano Rotondo, my favorite church in Rome, San Clemente, Domus Aurea and much more!) with cobblestoned streets (the streets are less narrow than in the area around Piazza Navona and the Pantheon) you get to enjoy and breathe the quintessential Rome.

Elsa's is located towards the end of Via dei Querceti, a closed street with Roman stairs, so there is absolutely no traffic noise. As we sat chatting in her living room, we mentioned how unusual it is that you are in the heart a bustling and chaotic city such as Rome, and still feel nothing of all that in her apartment.

The B&B is on the second floor (with elevator) of an elegant apartment building with marble stairs. One part of the apartment is reserved for the owner. The guests' part has two good-sized, bright, breezy and silent double rooms (both leading out to a courtyard, with trees and plants; one of the rooms has a private balcony). There is one pleasantly furnished bathroom (I know this sounds funny, but it's not 'just' a bathroom, it's actually a room with a little entrance area, chairs and table) to be shared between the two guestrooms (Elsa has her own bathroom). In the corridor between the two rooms she keeps a table with an electric water kettle, and puts out a few snack items (like juice and cookies).

For breakfast you get a voucher for the Classic Italian breakfast (cappuccino and pastry) to enjoy at a bar close by.

There is a small vegetable market just down the street and lots of restaurants and bars, as well as Luzzi's, one of our favorite pizzerias. A nice park, Colle Oppio, is just a few minutes walk away, which has a great little outdoor café in the center. The closest metro stop (Colosseo) is about 300 meters away, and there are several bus stops (numbers 75,571,87,271,85) as well as the tram (no.3, to Trastevere) within walking distance (about 2 minutes).

Elsa is a discreet and classy host, who opened her B&B after her husband passed away.
  • 2nd floor
  • breakfast included (self-service)
  • breakfast voucher (at nearby cafe) included
  • WiFi
  • tea kettle
  • fan
  • air-conditioning in bedroom only
  • with elevator
  • crib upon request - up to 3 y.o.
  • tea-making facilities
  • linen and towels provided
  • TV
Maria on Jul 2018:

I loved everything! The hospitality of Francesco (Elsa’s brother, for Elsa was abroad and let me stay nevertheless!), the spacious room, the clean bathroom, and the location. The area is perfect for a woman traveling alone: really safe! It’s a quiet place and really really cool in the summertime: I never felt the need to use the air conditioning even though outside it was 35 degrees Celsius. Thank you so much!
Just one small thing: it’s so great people are not allowed to smoke! But the ashtray in the window seat gives the opposite message: its just being there invites people to smoke secretly. Maybe take it away?
Lovely as always!
Laura on Jan 2017:
Elsa we had a great time. The room was spacious, the bathroom also, did not lack anything, it seemed to be at home! The breakfast we were served in a bar alla'angolo of the road, the guys were very kind and the croissants ... great! The location was central, a 5-minute walk (or less) you arrive at the Coliseum. We could move on foot, because of its central location made it unnecessary to use the means. When we arrived Elsa even gave us a map and gave us a lot of useful information for visiting Rome at its best. Following his advice, we had a great time. I recommend to stay in this room at all. It is a perfect solution for those who want to live right in the heart of Rome.
Lisa Chambers on Oct 2016:

Location! It's in a great spot to get around to all the sights. And Elsa is very nice.
The mattress was incredibly hard and uncomfortable, I really think she should replace it with a newer one--it seemed ancient.
Carrie on May 2015:

Elsa was a very sweet lady. She took time to show us many sites on a map and tell us which bus numbers and subways to take. She does not speak any English, but her smile and gestures were enough to let us know that she was glad we were there. My very limited Italian and our phrase book helped us out. The room & bathroom were very clean and Elsa left us a little snack and juice boxes and a coffee maker in our room.
The Cross-Pollinate staff went above & beyond in helping us! We had to leave at 5am for an early morning flight and Cross Pollinate arranged that service for us. Our car/driver got us to the airport right on time. When we were first looking for a place to stay in Rome, it was overwhelming w all the choices. CP staff narrowed it down to several places for us and then we were able to pick easily. Thanks for such great service!
Jennifer on Jan 2015:

The host was lovely and helpful and inspired me to learn more italian so I can properly express my gratitude. :) The accommodations were unique and thoughtfully designed. Elsa and the Beehive/Cross Pollinate staff was very informative, kind, and easy to communicate with for all needs regarding my stay and travel. I also loved the nearby "breakfast" spot and the quietness of the (still central) neighborhood.
I would highly recommend Beehive and Elsa's places to all potential travelers. My experience was beyond my expectations, felt very personalized, and staying in such a lovely home set the stage for an amazing experience of Rome! I hope to be back soon.
Jan on Dec 2014:

The location is excellent: very quiet neighbourhood, close to the greatest cultural highlights. Will be even better when subwayline C will open. The building is very prestigious, with a beautiful escalator and stairway, wooden doors, stone and parquet floors. The appartment is both chique and cosy.
The 'no refund policy' is a little harsh. I had to go through serious ordeal to get to Rome, because my flight was cancelled due to a strike. If I hadn't made it, I would still need to pay for my stay. I think that is rather unfair.
Admin on 19. Dec 2014:
It's not that we have a "no refund" policy - it's that we give full refunds up to a certain number of days before arrival, which varies from property to property. After that point, one can't cancel without a penalty. But this is normal for any hotel/apartment rental anywhere in the world, and the same goes for air travel. We also offer a 10 euro cancellation insurance in certain cities where we work that allows guests to cancel at any time with a full refund.
Regina Nadolny on Oct 2014:

Very warm welcome from Elsa. Discrete and helpful. Good location - near city center - good connection to Metro. 2 rooms side by side. Perfect for our family (with 2 children). We felt comfortable.
Good recommendations. Everthing without problems.
Nadina on Sep 2014:

Elsa's house is a beautiful old Roman house and our room was perfect. Elsa is a very stylish and welcoming lady and her place is very clean and very comfortable. The bathroom is a piece of jewellery and the view to the inner garden of the building makes it a nice experience. The location is perfect, literally steps away from the Colosseum on a very quiet street and in a very aafe neighbourhood. Elsa gives vouchers for breakfast in a litttle bar very close which serves great coffee and fresh juice. All in all we would definitely come back when in Rome! Don't forget to get cash with you to pay for the stay.
Cross Polinate is a very friendly and helpful way to find accommodation. Very responsive ans very helpful, they put you in touch with the right place for your needs and follow up. A great and more personal alternative to the big websites who do bookings!
Karen on Sep 2014:
Lovely owner and great location
Sharon Mason on Jun 2014:

The location is excellent; the room is comfortable and the price is reasonable.
Sound-proofing between the two rental rooms would have improved our experience.
I would not have found this place without Cross-Pollinate. Thank you.
Daphne on Jun 2014:

Elsa is a super friendly host, she welcomes you with a big smile and a map to share information. Location is perfect, very close the Colosseum and the metro line.
Good service
Joanna Lord on Jun 2014:
Elsa was one of the kindest, most welcoming hosts ever, despite the language barrier! Her apartment is perfectly located and the room was lovely, clean and airy. We had a great stay.
Rachel, Bebe, and little G on Jun 2014:

We are an Australian/Brazilian couple with an 7 month baby. The room was comfortable & quiet, there was wifi, tv, tea & coffee making facilities in the room, air-conditioning, interesting Rome books, a cot for our baby, and views over the central courtyard - so you can really get a feel of Rome life. We heard some lovely piano music from the other apartments during the day from the courtyard :-) Elsa was absolutely fantastic, so lovely, so helpful, and doting on our son. While she doesn't speak any English, my husband can speak Spanish so we communicated just fine :-) The building has a little elevator, but there are some stairs you need to go up from the street, and also inside the reception -- which, if you are 2 people with a stoller, its no problem at all (but if you were solo with a stroller, perhaps not). Location was fabulous - just a few minutes walk from the Colloseum, and breakfast at the café has views of the Colloseum. Most of the other sights are within walking distance (ie within 20 mins). As a side note I would definitely recommend having lunch at the same café as the breakfast - we had probably the best meal of our Rome trip there - very delicious & generous portions for lunch/dinner meals! On another side note (for parents), the Colloseum is very stroller friendly, however the Palatine Hill is definitely not - use your baby carrier backpack if you have one. I enjoyed my stay at Elsa's.
I would suggest you take your own toiletries (we always do anyway), as the ones provided are very basic.
Excellent! My first time using Cross-Pollinate & it was so simple & easy. I only contacted them the day before we were due to arrive, and they had it all arranged with the owner within a couple hours with clear instructions & details. Also they arranged a taxi service from the airport, which I highly recommend - nice driver, nice Mercedes, pre-briefed already with our address, and it completely seamless - especially when you're travelling with a baby & its evening, this is a service well valued, I'm sure it knocked at least an hour off our transit time if we were to catch train in etc. I will be recommending Cross-Pollinate to my friends.
Mieke on May 2014:

Nice neighborhood, Little supermarket, restaurants and public transport within walking distance.
For the price a good bedroom and a nice place to stay. Mattresses are a bit thin.
Elizabeth Nash on Apr 2014:

Very convenient location; clean and comfortable room; very quiet (molto tranquillo!) - so quiet that we actually overslept. Elsa was kind and helpful, and her recommendation for a nearby restaurant was excellent. As noted in the Cross-Pollinate description, she doesn't speak much English, and we don't speak Italian - but we were able to communicate well enough.
I've been recommending Cross-Pollinate to others! We stayed in two listed B&Bs on our recent trip to Italy. Both were described accurately on the Cross-Pollinate site; both were clean, comfortable, conveniently located and reasonably priced. The directions provided in our confirmation email were accurate and easy to follow.
Tab on Apr 2014:

Clean room, great location, comfortable bed, TV
can't think of anything. bathroom was shared with one other room, but this was not a problem for us. Elsa doesn't speak much English, but her daughter does.
We had a great stay. Her place was easy to find with the directions we were given and within easy walking distance to the Colosseum. We were given a coupon to eat breakfast (croissant and coffee) at a nearby cafe which we enjoyed. Would stay again.
Monika & Barbara on Apr 2014:

excellent website!I I will recommend this to my friend.
Margaret on Oct 2013:

I wish I could give a few of these categories more than 5 stars. Ms. Elsa does not speak English yet she was still super helpful. The location is ideal. My husband and I very much enjoyed our stay in the Eternal City.
It was a huge benefit using cross-pollinate to reserve a car to take us to the airport as our flight was super early. It was just one less thing we needed to worry about.
Lorraine Payne on Oct 2013:

It was easy to find using the directions provided by Cross Pollinate. The room was clean, and Elsa and her daughter (translator!) were very helpful - giving us a map and bus details when we arrived.
We found the pillows a little hard but apart from that, nothing!
Very useful, would recommend it to anyone.
Nicole on Oct 2013:

Elsa is a charming and gracious host. The room is clean and spacious, and the building is very quiet. The location is great, so close to the Colosseum and a Metro stop. We would love to stay here again on our next visit to Rome.
The folks at Cross-Pollinate were easy to work with, and quick to respond to my requests.
Sarah Meister on Oct 2013:

We arrived earlier than planned. We rang Elsa it was no Problem she was there within 15 min. Then her daughter came to translate for us! Our room was clean,comfortable, quiet, with a balcony onto an inner courtyard. Bathroom was clean, no Problems with sharing. Elsa made us feel very welcome. Thank you.
Thank you for the directions from thr Airport to the housedoor. So thoughtful and helpful. We will certainly use your site again.
G on Oct 2013:

Very good location, super central but still quiet. Very welcoming and helpful owner who speaks mainly Italian but very enthusiastically.
Breakfast is only a cappuccino and a pastry so if you're a fan of big breakfasts you'll need to buy extra item from the coffee shop.
Stephanie on Oct 2013:
Elsa is a great person. Even though she has difficulties speaking English she tries to give a lot of info. It would help if she spoke a bit slower =P
Anna on Oct 2013:

Elsa could not have been any sweeter! She was truly a delight and helpful with local restaurant suggestions. Her accommodations are clean, neat and as pictured.
The only thing that could use a bit of improvement would be the beds. They were no worse than the other beds we slept in while in Italy. But a mattress topper would help to smooth things out a bit and perhaps make a nicer more restful stay.
Cross-Pollinated, was easy and efficient!
Matthew on Jun 2013:

Great location. Very clean and good size rooms. Quiet area with no street noise.
Doesn't speak English but is easy enough to understand, no hassle checking in and getting sorted. Wonderfully helpful and charismatic lady.
Easy to book with and provide accurate and helpful info.
Alexandra on May 2013:

Elsa could not have been friendlier or a more gracious hostess! We got a little lost on the way over which delayed our arrival time by about an hour yet we were able to contact Elsa and she was more than accommodating. Our room overlooking the courtyard gave our stay a very authentic Italian feel especially one night when a pianist was practicing! Added to the fact that it is situated exceptionally close to both the Colosseum and the Basilica of San Clemente, this was an exceptional place to stay.
While we never had to contact Cross-Pollinate while in Rome, all of the information we received was accurate and left us well prepared to deal with anything that might go awry with our stay. Fortunately, everything went as planned and promised!
Tammi on Apr 2013:
Elsa was wonderful! Even though she did not speak English, she had her niece come up and translate and we figured it out even without the translation. I accidentally only booked one double instead of two for 3 people, but Elsa was super accomodating and brought in a rollaway and all was well. Location was perfect, on a quiet street only a couple blocks from the Colossium with coffee shops and every day life all around.
Ivan on Sep 2012:

My wife and I stayed there the last night of our honeymoon. The hospitality at Elsa's was amazing. We had a wonderful stay.
You have to be willing and ready to share a bathroom.
Rahul on May 2012:

This is seriously the best place you could stay at while in Rome. Its literally right next to the Colosseum and the Colosseum Train Station. At the same time, its tucked away in a nice, upscale neighborhood. Easy access from here to just about anywhere in Rome. The rooms are perfect and you wouldn't need more. Really good bathroom staffed with great products. Also, Elsa serves awesome croissants and tea which you can always have. The best part is obviously the location. I saw the Colosseum anywhere from 4-8 times a day staying here. Also, great dining and conveniences within 5mins (walk) such as an ATM and train/bus service. I highly recommend staying here and the next time I visit Rome, I will definitely stay here again! The pictures here do not do justice to how beautiful this place really is!
Elsa has trouble understanding English but nevertheless, I managed with gestures and names and translate app on my phone! She also provides maps on which she marks the very important things that you must not miss. The Wi Fi was a bit iffy but nevertheless manageable. This is more of an alert but you"ll also learn lots of Italian as you"ll be forced to communicate in it :)
Cross-Pollinate was absolutely amazing. I literally made a reservation right before I arrived in Rome and they were excellent about communicating all the necessary details! I have really been intrigued by them and plan on using them again/recommending them to anyone traveling to Rome!
Laura on May 2012:

This is a charming B&B and Elsa is welcoming and very friendly! She made me feel welcome from the moment I arrived. The room was very clean and the courtyard view nice. The location is excellent! It's set on a quiet street without any through traffic just a short stroll from the Colosseum. I arrived by train and easily made my way from the Termini station to the B&B via the Metropolitana subway. Great central and quiet location in Rome!
This B&B has a shared bathroom, which is very large and clean. I don't often stay in B&Bs without a private bathroom, but the home setting at the B&B made it comfortable.
Very convenient to search and find the best B&B and apartment options in Rome!
anonymous on Jun 2012:

Elsa is an extraordinarily sweet woman. She was genuinely invested in making sure we had a pleasant stay.
Elsa speaks almost no English, but we were able to communicate pretty well through a combination of broken Spanish and hand gestures. Just be prepared to struggle a little.
Michelle on May 2012:

I loved everything about my stay at Elsa's; it's in a great location just a short walk from the Colosseum, Elsa's accommodations are first rate, and she's also a lovely person to boot :)
I had to change my original reservation a couple times, and the staff at Cross-Pollinate was extremely cordial and helpful. Excellent service!
Julia on Sep 2012:

Elsa is a lovely woman and the locality of her apartment is really terrific. This place suits people who want a quiet place to stay and not suitable for people coming in at odd times as Elsa lives in the same apartment. It was great to be able to have breakdkfast around the corner at the local bar!
Very professional, thankyou.
David on May 2012:

The room was pleasant and quiet, since the window opens onto an inner courtyard instead of a noisy street. The room / sheets / towels were very clean. There are restaurants and a bank and pharmacy within a couple blocks, the metro stop and Colosseum also quite close. The owner was very nice and accommodating. She speaks almost no English, however. I'm conversational in Italian, so it wasn't really an issue, but I can imagine that it would get difficult if you don't know any Italian.
The hot water in the shower was very intermittent both times I used it. Not very pleasant. There was no air conditioning (which is pretty standard in Rome unless you're paying a lot). The room was not unbearable, but it was hot. Wifi was VERY slow but it did work (again, pretty standard for a small Italian B&B). Too slow to call my family over Skype without frequent drop-outs. I was hoping to be able to sit and write on my laptop in my room, but there was no table or desk I could sit at. This might not be an issue for you, but it was disappointing for me.
The bed was a thick futon on top of a wooden frame, not a normal mattress. That being said, I didn't find it uncomfortable, so I'm not sure it's a "con" - just something to be aware of.
Admin on 06. May 2013:
The air-conditioning at Elsa's is a portable kind and in April I have to assume it wasn't in use, given that in April it's not considered hot. I don't know if the guest inquired about it or not - but don't have any record of begin asked about it. In April, most people in Rome are still using blankets.
Adrienne on May 2012:
It was clean, quiet and easy to find. I was alone on my trip, and felt completely safe and comfortable. I would definitely stay here again.
average score
4.7 / 5.0
Accuracy of listing
Helpfulness of owner / staff / host
Helpfulness of Cross-Pollinate
Booking details
Booking details: Bed & Breakfast (owner lives on premises), 2 guestrooms, with 1 shared bathroom
Payment accepted: cash on arrival in euro
Minimum stay: no minimum stay
Cancellations allowed up to: 5 days before arrival
Occupancy: double
Bed options: 1 queen (160 cm) or 2 singles
Policies & Extra Charges: non-smoking, city tourist tax €3.50 per person per night (not included in price), fee for check-in after 10 pm is €20
Spoken Language(s):
Rates and Availability
 CLOSED - Elsa's Colosseum Bed & Breakfast